The Problem of Children of Migrant Parents

by Akiko Takano

I was shocked to read “The Care Crisis in the Philippines” as homework. Indeed, there was the mutual love between parent and child even if mother lives far distantly. However, it is ironic for migrant mother to go abroad and take care of the unrelated child in order to earn money even though she has own child. Migrant mother works overseas; meanwhile, she can hardly meet her child, and father and the relative bring up her child. I was interested in the facts, so this report introduces the example that Philippine migrant parents who went to Italy for working and I want to find a solution of this situation.

In this paragraph, I discuss an example that not only mother but also father go to Italy from the Philippines for migrant workers and have their relative bring up their child. Migrant parents can take a child younger than 18 years to Italy if they acquire residence permission in Italy. However, migrant parents actually not only leave their child in the hometown, but also send back even their child born in Italy to their hometown, and their relatives take care of their child. Why on earth such matter happens? There are mainly two reasons. First, migrant parents have little time to take care of their children. Because they come Italy to earn money, they often get full-time or live-in job. If bring their child, they have to reduce work. Second, the cost of living becomes rise if they live with their child in Italy. Because the prices of the developed country are high, it is cheaper bringing up their child in the mother country than migrated place. In short, migrant parents face problems of time and money if they try to receive their child. As a result they choose to leave their children in the Philippine.

Well then, how will this problem be solved? I think that children had better live with their real parents even if they have the relatives who bring up them. However, the structure of the migrant worker in the Philippine cannot be changed immediately. It supports the economy of the Philippines. Although, I believe there is a way to improve this situation. The country accepting migrant workers should have understanding for the child care of the migrant worker. The government should arrange the system that they are compatible with work, and child care. Not only migrant parents but also the country accepting them should grapple with this problem. If the country assists, future of the children will become bright.

Reference

Itaru Nagasaka. (2009). “国境を超えるフィリピン村人の民族誌 トランスナショナリズムの人類学”. tokyo:Akasi syoten.

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